Brigham Young University plans to appeal a court decision last week that found the university’s police department to be a government entity, subject to the state’s open-records laws.
The ruling, in a lawsuit filed by The Salt Lake Tribune, relates to BYU’s handling of sexual assault and the role of law enforcement in campus disciplinary proceedings. If it stands, BYU Police would be required to comply with the Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA) and be subject to the same public scrutiny, transparency and accountability as other law enforcement agencies.
But BYU contends that because the university is private, so too is its police department, and that GRAMA and Utah’s transparency rules do not apply. The school is owned by the Mormon church.
On this week’s episode of “Trib Talk," Holly Richardson, a member of the Utah State Records Committee and a former state lawmaker, joins reporters Benjamin Wood and Jessica Miller to discuss the ruling and what it means for law enforcement transparency.
“Trib Talk” is produced by Sara Weber with additional editing by Dan Harrie.